Is Atlanta Ready For An Aging Population? New Local Survey Reveals Atlanta-Area Residents Concerned About Their City And Themselves As They Get Old; New Website, Healthy Aging “By The Decades” Checklist And Aging Communities Toolkit Offer Help
More than nine out of ten people who live in the Atlanta area believe they will live a long life, but less than one-third of Atlanta-area residents feel their community is very prepared to support an aging population. And while more than two-thirds of Atlanta-area residents think the quality of life for seniors is better now than in the past, there is an overall feeling of unpreparedness around Atlanta area infrastructure, according to a new survey commissioned by Pfizer, Inc. and Generations United, an intergenerational advocacy organization. The general feeling of lack of preparedness is seen across all generations - from Millennials to the Greatest Generation. With more than 10,000 people expected to turn 65 every day through 2030, community concerns reflected in the survey centered on inadequate transportation, housing and caregiving for older people. Only a small portion of respondents feel their communities are very equipped in terms of healthcare facilities, home caregiving, transportation and housing for older people. Aging well means living in a community prepared to support people as they age. But 45 percent of respondents feel Atlanta is not at all prepared to provide appropriate employment opportunities for an aging population and nearly four out of ten feel being old is something to fear. On a more positive note, 73 percent of survey respondents believe that people who work past retirement age stay healthier longer and are happier. “While we’ve seen many improvements in our society for aging populations in recent years, there are still many hurdles that need to be overcome,” says Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall, Chief Medical Officer for Pfizer. “The good news is that there is a lot we can do to protect and enhance our quality of life as we age, simply by committing today to healthy behaviors that help prevent or delay chronic disease."